It was mostly luck that Freeman saw the silhouette of a man in the alley way. We had peddled past the same alley at least four times earlier in the evening and, as usual, it was vacant. This time it was not.
Though I strained to see the murky outline of a person against the dark city backdrop, I did see it. We were at least two blocks away as we silently strolled down the alley as stealthily as possible.
Mine eyes remained focused on the unmoving silhouette and I crossed my fingers that I wouldn’t ride my bike strait into a large rock or boulder and flip over the handlebars.
As we encroached on the subject he suddenly started moving.
Like a startled wild animal he fled to the closest opening in the alley.
Freeman shined his light toward the unsuspecting suspect.
I was startled with what I witnessed.
Running toward an abandoned apartment, I saw the backside of a tall, middle aged, naked man.
Naked or not, we gave chase.
The Hispanic male, still wearing his birthday suit, grabbed on to the door handle of an abandoned apartment. He desperately shook the locked apartment door with no success.
With two officers quickly approaching he darted for a wooden fence. With his naked body pressed up against the wooden slats, he reached for the metal latch to unlock the gate. After, perhaps, a sliver or two, he opened the latch and pushed open the door.
He sprinted around the gate and crouched down in the corner behind it.
Not knowing what the exposed subject was doing behind the gate, Freeman slammed his front tire into the wood, causing the gate to whip around and crash into the suspect.
The disrobed man remained wedged somewhere between the gate and block wall. When the suspect failed to move from behind the gate, Freeman gave the fence a hard kick, promptly followed by a second one.
The suspect endured the bombardment of wooden slats well as we later discovered he was trying to put his pants on between kicks.
Once we saw that he had no weapons hidden behind the wall, we allowed him to get dressed. After the suspect put his cloths on, still missing shoes and socks, we talked to him about why he was naked in the alley.
All he could say, with most the interview in Spanish, was that he was trying to find a place to poop. He could not explain why he was in the alley for five minutes looking for a place to go, or why he removed his pants, shirt, and shoes to do so. He could not even explain why he did not go at his own home only 30 feet away.
All he could say was that he had to go and he was looking for a rock.
We could not find anyone in the area to be the victim of indecent exposure. So before we released him from scene, I explained to the subject that the real victim here was my partner who had to see him “desnudo” (des – new - dough).
Freeman, who thought he had translated the conversation well, later asked me if I told the suspect that he was the real victim because he saw his “noodle”. (Though technically accurate either way, I had to explain that desnudo means naked).
Though this was not the first naked subject I have chased, I am hoping it is the last.